Foreign volunteers

Foreign volunteers

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The armed forces of many nations have, at one time or another, used foreign volunteers who are motivated by political, ideological or other considerations to join a foreign army. These may be formed into units of a given nationality or may be formed into mixed nationality foreign units. Sometimes foreign volunteers were or are incorporated into ordinary units. The practice has a long history, dating back at least as far as the Roman Empire
Roman Empire
The Roman Empire was the post-Republican period of the ancient Roman civilization, characterised by an autocratic form of government and large territorial holdings in Europe and around the Mediterranean....

, which recruited non-citizens into Auxiliary
Auxiliaries (Roman military)
Auxiliaries formed the standing non-citizen corps of the Roman army of the Principate , alongside the citizen legions...

 units on the promise of them receiving Roman citizenship for themselves and their descendents at the end of their service

Reasons for volunteering


Three main reasons for volunteering can be identified:
  • Ideology - the volunteer believes in a cause and volunteers to fight for it.
  • Adventure - the volunteer joins a foreign army to see action.
  • Long-term personal or family benefit - the volunteer serves in order to qualify for non-financial benefits, such as forgiveness of sins, citizenship or to acquire an education.


This is a simplistic analysis and, in many cases, a volunteer will be influenced by two or more of these reasons. It follows, therefore, that a unit of foreign volunteers may contain soldiers with different, or different combinations of, motivations.

Mixed nationality units of foreign volunteers

  • 62nd (Royal American) Regiment of Foot. Composed of 'foreign Protestants'.
  • French Foreign Legion
    French Foreign Legion
    The French Foreign Legion is a unique military service wing of the French Army established in 1831. The foreign legion was exclusively created for foreign nationals willing to serve in the French Armed Forces...

  • Hohenlohe Regiment
    Hohenlohe Regiment
    The Hohenlohe Regiment was an infantry regiment of the French Army established after the abdication of Napoleon Bonaparte and consisting of foreign soldiers who wished to continue service in the French Army.-History:...

     of France during the Bourbon Restoration
    Bourbon Restoration
    The Bourbon Restoration is the name given to the period following the successive events of the French Revolution , the end of the First Republic , and then the forcible end of the First French Empire under Napoleon  – when a coalition of European powers restored by arms the monarchy to the...

    .
  • International Brigades
    International Brigades
    The International Brigades were military units made up of volunteers from different countries, who traveled to Spain to defend the Second Spanish Republic in the Spanish Civil War between 1936 and 1939....

     of the Spanish Civil War
  • Islamic Legion
    Islamic Legion
    The Islamic Legion was a Libyan-sponsored pan-Arab paramilitary force, created in 1972...

  • King's African Rifles
    King's African Rifles
    The King's African Rifles was a multi-battalion British colonial regiment raised from the various British possessions in East Africa from 1902 until independence in the 1960s. It performed both military and internal security functions within the East African colonies as well as external service as...

  • Mahal - non-Israeli volunteers who fought for Israel in the 1948 Arab-Israeli War
    1948 Arab-Israeli War
    The 1948 Arab–Israeli War, known to Israelis as the War of Independence or War of Liberation The war commenced after the termination of the British Mandate for Palestine and the creation of an independent Israel at midnight on 14 May 1948 when, following a period of civil war, Arab armies invaded...

    . There is to this day a Mahal program in the Israeli army.
  • The SS (particularly the Waffen-SS
    Waffen-SS
    The Waffen-SS was a multi-ethnic and multi-national military force of the Third Reich. It constituted the armed wing of the Schutzstaffel or SS, an organ of the Nazi Party. The Waffen-SS saw action throughout World War II and grew from three regiments to over 38 divisions, and served alongside...

    ) made extensive use of foreigners during World War II. For more information, see: Europäische Freiwillige
    Europäische Freiwillige
    Europäische Freiwillige is a German term meaning 'European Volunteers', derived from the German 'Freiwillige' , and is used to describe volunteers from an occupied country who join the army of the occupier.-Background:...

    , Foreign volunteers and conscripts in the Waffen-SS.

  • Tercio de Extranjeros, or Tercio, or Spanish Legion
    Spanish Legion
    The Spanish Legion , formerly Spanish Foreign Legion, is an elite unit of the Spanish Army and Spain's Rapid Reaction Force. Founded as the Tercio de Extranjeros , it was originally intended as a Spanish equivalent of the French Foreign Legion, but in practice it recruited almost exclusively...

     - prior to 1987 and in the 2000s, after the abandonment of conscription, the Spanish Army is again accepting foreigners from select nationalities. The Legion today accepts male and female native Spanish speakers, mostly from Central American and South American states. Recruits are required to have a valid Spanish residence permit.
  • Rhodesian Light Infantry
    Rhodesian Light Infantry
    The 1st Battalion, The Rhodesian Light Infantry, commonly the Rhodesian Light Infantry , was a regiment formed in 1961 at Brady Barracks, Bulawayo, Southern Rhodesia as a light infantry unit within the army of the Federation of Rhodesia and Nyasaland...

     (initially all-Rhodesian, this unit became the "Foreign Legion" of the Rhodesian Army)
  • Many members of the US Marine Corps are of Latin American and not US nationality. The US Army made extensive use of foreign soldiers, particularly Irish and German, during the nineteenth century; German Jewish troops were common during World War II
    World War II
    World War II, or the Second World War , was a global conflict lasting from 1939 to 1945, involving most of the world's nations—including all of the great powers—eventually forming two opposing military alliances: the Allies and the Axis...

    . However, many if not most non-American troops in the United States armed forces are usually seeking the expedited United States citizenship
    United States nationality law
    Article I, section 8, clause 4 of the United States Constitution expressly gives the United States Congress the power to establish a uniform rule of naturalization. The Immigration and Naturalization Act sets forth the legal requirements for the acquisition of, and divestiture from, citizenship of...

     that comes with completion of a term of service, and can be seen as aspiring Americans rather than outright foreigners.

American


During both world wars, American volunteers served on the allied side before the USA joined the war.
  • The Lafayette Escadrille
    Lafayette Escadrille
    The Lafayette Escadrille , was an escadrille of the French Air Service, the Aéronautique militaire, during World War I composed largely of American volunteer pilots flying fighters.-History:Dr. Edmund L...

     in the French Air Force
    French Air Force
    The French Air Force , literally Army of the Air) is the air force of the French Armed Forces. It was formed in 1909 as the Service Aéronautique, a service arm of the French Army, then was made an independent military arm in 1933...

    , World War I
    World War I
    World War I , which was predominantly called the World War or the Great War from its occurrence until 1939, and the First World War or World War I thereafter, was a major war centred in Europe that began on 28 July 1914 and lasted until 11 November 1918...

  • The 7th Air Escadrille in the Polish Air Force
    Polish Air Force
    The Polish Air Force is the military Air Force wing of the Polish Armed Forces. Until July 2004 it was officially known as Wojska Lotnicze i Obrony Powietrznej...

    , Polish-Soviet War
    Polish-Soviet War
    The Polish–Soviet War was an armed conflict between Soviet Russia and Soviet Ukraine and the Second Polish Republic and the Ukrainian People's Republic—four states in post–World War I Europe...

  • The Eagle Squadrons in the Royal Air Force
    Royal Air Force
    The Royal Air Force is the aerial warfare service branch of the British Armed Forces. Formed on 1 April 1918, it is the oldest independent air force in the world...

    , World War II
    World War II
    World War II, or the Second World War , was a global conflict lasting from 1939 to 1945, involving most of the world's nations—including all of the great powers—eventually forming two opposing military alliances: the Allies and the Axis...

  • The Flying Tigers
    Flying Tigers
    The 1st American Volunteer Group of the Chinese Air Force in 1941–1942, famously nicknamed the Flying Tigers, was composed of pilots from the United States Army , Navy , and Marine Corps , recruited under presidential sanction and commanded by Claire Lee Chennault. The ground crew and headquarters...

     in the Chinese Air Force
    Chinese Air Force
    The phrase Chinese Air Force may refer to one of two modern bodies; a third historical unit can also be referred to as a part:*Republic of China Air Force: The air force of China from 1920 to 1949, operating from Taiwan only post-1949....

    , World War II
  • The Lincoln Brigade in the side of the Spanish Republican, Spanish Civil War
    Spanish Civil War
    The Spanish Civil WarAlso known as The Crusade among Nationalists, the Fourth Carlist War among Carlists, and The Rebellion or Uprising among Republicans. was a major conflict fought in Spain from 17 July 1936 to 1 April 1939...

  • Before the US entered the war, many Americans joined the Canadian Forces
    Canadian Forces
    The Canadian Forces , officially the Canadian Armed Forces , are the unified armed forces of Canada, as constituted by the National Defence Act, which states: "The Canadian Forces are the armed forces of Her Majesty raised by Canada and consist of one Service called the Canadian Armed Forces."...

    , especially the RCAF, and served in ordinary Canadian units.

British

  • The Auxiliary Legion of the First Carlist War
    First Carlist War
    The First Carlist War was a civil war in Spain from 1833-1839.-Historical background:At the beginning of the 18th century, Philip V, the first Bourbon king of Spain, promulgated the Salic Law, which declared illegal the inheritance of the Spanish crown by women...

  • The British Legions
    British Legions
    The British Legion or British Legions were foreign volunteer units that fought under Simón Bolívar against Spain for the independence of Colombia, Venezuela, Ecuador, and Peru. The Venezuelans called them the Albion Legion...

     in the South American Wars of Independence during the 19th century.
  • The British Free Corps
    British Free Corps
    During World War II, the British Free Corps was a unit of the consisting of British and Dominion prisoners of war who had been recruited by the Nazis. The unit was originally known as The Legion of St...

     of the Waffen SS in World War II

Chinese

  • The Chinese People's Volunteer Army that fought in the Korean War
    Korean War
    The Korean War was a conventional war between South Korea, supported by the United Nations, and North Korea, supported by the People's Republic of China , with military material aid from the Soviet Union...

     was nominally composed of volunteers sent by the People's Republic of China
    People's Republic of China
    China , officially the People's Republic of China , is the most populous country in the world, with over 1.3 billion citizens. Located in East Asia, the country covers approximately 9.6 million square kilometres...

     even though it was in fact composed of regular troops of the People's Liberation Army
    People's Liberation Army
    The People's Liberation Army is the unified military organization of all land, sea, strategic missile and air forces of the People's Republic of China. The PLA was established on August 1, 1927 — celebrated annually as "PLA Day" — as the military arm of the Communist Party of China...

    .

Croatian

  • The 1st Croatian Provosional Infantry Regiment, fought on Napoleon's side in Napoleonic Wars
  • The 2nd Croatian Provosional Infantry Regiment, fought on Napoleon's side in Napoleonic Wars
  • The 3rd Croatian Provosional Infantry Regiment, fought on Napoleon's side in Napoleonic Wars
  • The 4th Croatian Provosional Infantry Regiment, fought on Napoleon's side in Napoleonic Wars
  • The 13th Waffen Mountain Division of the SS Handschar
    13th Waffen Mountain Division of the SS Handschar (1st Croatian)
    The 13th Waffen Mountain Division of the SS Handschar was one of the thirty-eight divisions fielded as part of the Waffen-SS during World War II. Its recruits were composed of Muslim Bosniaks. The Handschar division was a mountain infantry formation, the equivalent of the German "Gebirgsjäger" ...

    , fought in World War II on German side
  • The 23rd Waffen Mountain Division of the SS Kama, fought in World War II on German side
  • The 369th Reinforced Infantry Regiment
    369th Reinforced Infantry Regiment
    The 369th Reinforced Infantry Regiment , also known as the Devil Division was a military unit of the Independent State of Croatia's Croatian Home Guard which fought alongside the German Armed Forces on the Eastern Front.-Formation:Croatian leader Ante Pavelić sent a letter to German Führer Adolf...

     as part of German Wehrmacht
    Wehrmacht
    The Wehrmacht – from , to defend and , the might/power) were the unified armed forces of Nazi Germany from 1935 to 1945. It consisted of the Heer , the Kriegsmarine and the Luftwaffe .-Origin and use of the term:...

    , fought in World War II
  • The 373rd (Croat) Infantry Division, as part of German Wehrmacht
    Wehrmacht
    The Wehrmacht – from , to defend and , the might/power) were the unified armed forces of Nazi Germany from 1935 to 1945. It consisted of the Heer , the Kriegsmarine and the Luftwaffe .-Origin and use of the term:...

    , fought in World War II
  • The 392nd (Croat) Infantry Division, as part of German Wehrmacht
    Wehrmacht
    The Wehrmacht – from , to defend and , the might/power) were the unified armed forces of Nazi Germany from 1935 to 1945. It consisted of the Heer , the Kriegsmarine and the Luftwaffe .-Origin and use of the term:...

    , fought in World War II
  • The Croatian Air Force Legion
    Croatian Air Force Legion
    The Croatian Air Force Legion , or HZL, also known as the Croatian Legion, was a military unit of the Air Force of the Independent State of Croatia which fought alongside the Luftwaffe on the Eastern Front from 1941 to 1943 and then back on Croatian soil...

    , as part of German Luftwaffe
    Luftwaffe
    Luftwaffe is a generic German term for an air force. It is also the official name for two of the four historic German air forces, the Wehrmacht air arm founded in 1935 and disbanded in 1946; and the current Bundeswehr air arm founded in 1956....

     fought in World War II on German side
  • The Croatian Naval Legion
    Croatian Naval Legion
    The Croatian Naval Legion , officially known as the Croatian Naval Battalion - Black Sea was a military unit of the Navy of the Independent State of Croatia which fought as part of the Kriegsmarine on the Eastern Front....

    , as part of German Kriegsmarine
    Kriegsmarine
    The Kriegsmarine was the name of the German Navy during the Nazi regime . It superseded the Kaiserliche Marine of World War I and the post-war Reichsmarine. The Kriegsmarine was one of three official branches of the Wehrmacht, the unified armed forces of Nazi Germany.The Kriegsmarine grew rapidly...

     fought in World War II on Black Sea
    Black Sea
    The Black Sea is bounded by Europe, Anatolia and the Caucasus and is ultimately connected to the Atlantic Ocean via the Mediterranean and the Aegean seas and various straits. The Bosphorus strait connects it to the Sea of Marmara, and the strait of the Dardanelles connects that sea to the Aegean...


French

  • French Foreign Legion accepts foreigners
  • Some French emigres who fled to Britain fought in the British Army of the Napoleonic Wars
    Napoleonic Wars
    The Napoleonic Wars were a series of wars declared against Napoleon's French Empire by opposing coalitions that ran from 1803 to 1815. As a continuation of the wars sparked by the French Revolution of 1789, they revolutionised European armies and played out on an unprecedented scale, mainly due to...

  • Charlemagne Regiment
    33rd Waffen Grenadier Division of the SS Charlemagne (1st French)
    The 33. Waffen-Grenadier-Division der SS Charlemagne and Charlemagne Regiment are collective names used for units of French volunteers in the Wehrmacht and later Waffen-SS during World War II...

     of the SS fought for Germany in the Second World War
  • Chasseurs Britanniques
    Chasseurs Britanniques
    The Chasseurs Britanniques was a battalion-sized corps of foreign volunteers, who fought for Great Britain during the Napoleonic Wars. The regiment was formed from the remnants of the Prince of Condé's Army after it was disbanded in 1800...

     of the Napoleonic Wars

German

  • King's German Legion
    King's German Legion
    The King's German Legion was a British Army unit of expatriate German personnel, 1803–16. The Legion achieved the distinction of being the only German force to fight without interruption against the French during the Napoleonic Wars....

     in the Napoleonic Wars
    Napoleonic Wars
    The Napoleonic Wars were a series of wars declared against Napoleon's French Empire by opposing coalitions that ran from 1803 to 1815. As a continuation of the wars sparked by the French Revolution of 1789, they revolutionised European armies and played out on an unprecedented scale, mainly due to...

  • Condor Legion
    Condor Legion
    The Condor Legion was a unit composed of volunteers from the German Air Force and from the German Army which served with the Nationalists during the Spanish Civil War of July 1936 to March 1939. The Condor Legion developed methods of terror bombing which were used widely in the Second World War...

     in the Spanish Civil War

Irish

  • The Irish Brigade
    Irish Brigade (French)
    The Irish Brigade was a brigade in the French army composed of Irish exiles, led by Robert Reid. It was formed in May 1690 when five Jacobite regiments were sent from Ireland to France in return for a larger force of French infantry who were sent to fight in the Williamite war in Ireland...

     in the French Army from 1690 and through the eighteenth century.
  • An Irish Legion was part of the British Legions
    British Legions
    The British Legion or British Legions were foreign volunteer units that fought under Simón Bolívar against Spain for the independence of Colombia, Venezuela, Ecuador, and Peru. The Venezuelans called them the Albion Legion...

     fighting in the South American Wars of Independence
  • St. Patrick's Battalion in the Mexican Army during the Mexican-American War.
  • The Irish Brigade
    Irish Brigade (US)
    The Irish Brigade was an infantry brigade, consisting predominantly of Irish Americans, that served in the Union Army in the American Civil War. The designation of the first regiment in the brigade, the 69th New York Infantry, or the "Fighting 69th", continued in later wars...

     which served on the Union side in the American Civil War
    American Civil War
    The American Civil War was a civil war fought in the United States of America. In response to the election of Abraham Lincoln as President of the United States, 11 southern slave states declared their secession from the United States and formed the Confederate States of America ; the other 25...

     in the 1860s
  • Irish commandos
    Irish commandos
    Two units of Irish commandos fought alongside the Boers against the British forces during the Second Boer War -Irish Transvaal Brigade:John MacBride, a friend of Arthur Griffith's, organised the Irish Transvaal Brigade...

     in the Boer Army during the Boer War
    Boer War
    The Boer Wars were two wars fought between the British Empire and the two independent Boer republics, the Oranje Vrijstaat and the Republiek van Transvaal ....

  • Connolly Column
    Connolly Column
    The Connolly Column was the name given to the Irish volunteers who fought for the Second Spanish Republic in the International Brigades during the Spanish Civil War. They were named after James Connolly, the executed leader of the Irish Citizen Army...

    , fought for the Spanish republic in the Spanish civil war
    Spanish Civil War
    The Spanish Civil WarAlso known as The Crusade among Nationalists, the Fourth Carlist War among Carlists, and The Rebellion or Uprising among Republicans. was a major conflict fought in Spain from 17 July 1936 to 1 April 1939...

  • The Irish Brigade
    Irish Brigade (Spanish Civil War)
    The Irish Brigade , fought on the Nationalist side of Francisco Franco during the Spanish Civil War. The unit was formed wholly of Roman Catholics by the politician Eoin O'Duffy, who had previously organised the banned quasi-fascist Blueshirts and openly fascist Greenshirts in Ireland...

     which fought for the Nationalist rebels in the Spanish Civil War
    Spanish Civil War
    The Spanish Civil WarAlso known as The Crusade among Nationalists, the Fourth Carlist War among Carlists, and The Rebellion or Uprising among Republicans. was a major conflict fought in Spain from 17 July 1936 to 1 April 1939...

  • The Royal Irish Regiment
    Royal Irish Regiment
    The Royal Irish Regiment is an infantry unit of the British Army.-1992 creation:With an antecedence reaching back to 1689, the regiment was formed in 1992...

    , (formerly the Royal Irish Rangers
    Royal Irish Rangers
    The Royal Irish Rangers was a regular infantry regiment of the British Army.-Creation:...

    ), The Queen's Royal Hussars and The Irish Guards
    Irish Guards
    The Irish Guards , part of the Guards Division, is a Foot Guards regiment of the British Army.Along with the Royal Irish Regiment, it is one of the two Irish regiments remaining in the British Army. The Irish Guards recruit in Northern Ireland and the Irish neighbourhoods of major British cities...

     British Army regiments contain large numbers of soldiers of Irish nationality.

Italian

  • The Redshirts of Giuseppe Garibaldi
    Giuseppe Garibaldi
    Giuseppe Garibaldi was an Italian military and political figure. In his twenties, he joined the Carbonari Italian patriot revolutionaries, and fled Italy after a failed insurrection. Garibaldi took part in the War of the Farrapos and the Uruguayan Civil War leading the Italian Legion, and...

     fought in Southern Italy and Uruguay.
  • Corpo Truppe Volontarie
    Corpo Truppe Volontarie
    The Corps of Volunteer Troops was an Italian expeditionary force which was sent to Spain to support General Francisco Franco and the Spanish Nationalist forces during the Spanish Civil War...

     in the Spanish Civil War.
  • Division Garibaldi fought under Josip Broz Tito
    Josip Broz Tito
    Marshal Josip Broz Tito – 4 May 1980) was a Yugoslav revolutionary and statesman. While his presidency has been criticized as authoritarian, Tito was a popular public figure both in Yugoslavia and abroad, viewed as a unifying symbol for the nations of the Yugoslav federation...

    's command as a part of NOVJ in Dalmatia
    Dalmatia
    Dalmatia is a historical region on the eastern coast of the Adriatic Sea. It stretches from the island of Rab in the northwest to the Bay of Kotor in the southeast. The hinterland, the Dalmatian Zagora, ranges from fifty kilometers in width in the north to just a few kilometers in the south....

     and Bosnia, during the Second World War

Nepalese

  • Gurkhas
    Brigade of Gurkhas
    The Brigade of Gurkhas is the collective term for units of the current British Army that are composed of Nepalese soldiers. The brigade, which is 3,640 strong, draws its heritage from Gurkha units that originally served in the British Indian Army prior to Indian independence, and prior to that of...

     in the British Army
    British Army
    The British Army is the land warfare branch of Her Majesty's Armed Forces in the United Kingdom. It came into being with the unification of the Kingdom of England and Scotland into the Kingdom of Great Britain in 1707. The new British Army incorporated Regiments that had already existed in England...

    .
  • Gorkhas
    Gorkha regiments (India)
    The Gorkha regiments have been serving in the Indian Army ever since independence in 1947, when the Tripartite Agreement was signed. The regiments primarily consist of soldiers from India's Gorkha community and from the Gorkha tribes of Nepal...

     in the Indian Army.
  • Gurkha Contingent
    Gurkha Contingent
    The Gurkha Contingent is a line department of the Singapore Police Force. Members of the GC are trained to be highly-skilled and are selected for their display of strong discipline and dedication in their tasks...

     in the Singapore Police Force
    Singapore Police Force
    The Singapore Police Force is the main agency tasked with maintaining law and order in the city-state. Formerly known as the Republic of Singapore Police , it has grown from an 11-man organisation to a 38,587 strong force...

  • Gurkha Reserve Unit
    Gurkha Reserve Unit
    The Gurkha Reserve Unit is a special guard force in the Sultanate of Brunei. It maintains approximately 2,000 Gurkha.Unit members are all British Army veterans...

     - a similar type force in Brunei
    Brunei
    Brunei , officially the State of Brunei Darussalam or the Nation of Brunei, the Abode of Peace , is a sovereign state located on the north coast of the island of Borneo, in Southeast Asia...


Polish

  • Brigades
    Polish volunteers in the Spanish Civil War
    This article is about volunteers of Polish nationality or extraction who fought for the Spanish Second Republic in the Spanish Civil War. According to André Marty, the Comintern "chief organiser", about 3,000 Poles volunteered for the International Brigades. Elsewhere, "it has been calculated that...

     in the Spanish Civil War
    Spanish Civil War
    The Spanish Civil WarAlso known as The Crusade among Nationalists, the Fourth Carlist War among Carlists, and The Rebellion or Uprising among Republicans. was a major conflict fought in Spain from 17 July 1936 to 1 April 1939...

    .
  • Polish Lancers
    Chevau-légers
    The Chevau-légers was a generic French name for several units of light cavalry, roughly similar to lancers in the armies of other states during the Napoleonic Wars. Perhaps the most famous of all such units were the Polish 1st Light Cavalry Regiment of the Guards and the French 2nd Light Cavalry...

     and other Polish forces in the Army of Napoleon.
  • Polish Volunteers in many wars and revolutions of the 19th century, including Spring of Nations, Crimean War
    Crimean War
    The Crimean War was a conflict fought between the Russian Empire and an alliance of the French Empire, the British Empire, the Ottoman Empire, and the Kingdom of Sardinia. The war was part of a long-running contest between the major European powers for influence over territories of the declining...

     (on Turkish side) and The Paris Commune.

Scottish

  • Scots have a long history of service in the armies of Kings of France since at least the ninth century. The Scottish Guard was formally created by the French King Charles VII
    Charles VII of France
    Charles VII , called the Victorious or the Well-Served , was King of France from 1422 to his death, though he was initially opposed by Henry VI of England, whose Regent, the Duke of Bedford, ruled much of France including the capital, Paris...

     in 1422, and existed until the end of the Bourbon Restoration period in 1830.

Spanish

  • The Blue Division
    Blue Division
    The Blue Division officially designated as División Española de Voluntarios by the Spanish Army and 250. Infanterie-Division in the German Army, was a unit of Spanish volunteers that served in the German Army on the Eastern Front of the Second World War.-Origins:Although Spanish leader Field...

     of World War II fighting with Germany against the USSR.
  • The Blue Legion
    Blue Legion
    The Blue Legion was officially called the Legión Española de Voluntarios was created from 1,500 pro-Fascist volunteers who remained behind at the Eastern Front, after most of the Spanish Blue Division had been repatriated in March 1944, because Francisco Franco had started negotiations with the...

     was formed late in the Second World War out of Blue Division soldiers who refused to leave after Franco
    Francisco Franco
    Francisco Franco y Bahamonde was a Spanish general, dictator and head of state of Spain from October 1936 , and de facto regent of the nominally restored Kingdom of Spain from 1947 until his death in November, 1975...

     required all Spaniards to leave Axis forces.
  • The 9th Armoured Company of the Free French Forces.
  • The Spanish Legion
    Spanish Legion
    The Spanish Legion , formerly Spanish Foreign Legion, is an elite unit of the Spanish Army and Spain's Rapid Reaction Force. Founded as the Tercio de Extranjeros , it was originally intended as a Spanish equivalent of the French Foreign Legion, but in practice it recruited almost exclusively...

     accepts foreign recruits.

Swedish

  • Swedish Voluntary Air Force
    Swedish Voluntary Air Force (Winter War)
    The Flight Regiment 19 , also known as the Swedish Voluntary Air Force or F 19 was a Finnish Air Force unit, manned by Swedish volunteers, which operated from Kemi in northern Finland for the last 62 days of the Winter War. The aircraft also came from the Swedish Air Force inventory...

     fighting for the Finnish
    Finland
    Finland , officially the Republic of Finland, is a Nordic country situated in the Fennoscandian region of Northern Europe. It is bordered by Sweden in the west, Norway in the north and Russia in the east, while Estonia lies to its south across the Gulf of Finland.Around 5.4 million people reside...

     side in the Winter War
    Winter War
    The Winter War was a military conflict between the Soviet Union and Finland. It began with a Soviet offensive on 30 November 1939 – three months after the start of World War II and the Soviet invasion of Poland – and ended on 13 March 1940 with the Moscow Peace Treaty...

  • Swedish Volunteer Corps
    Swedish Volunteer Corps (Winter War)
    The Swedish Volunteer Corps during the Winter War numbered 9,640. Sweden was officially non-belligerent, however not neutral, during the course of the war so only volunteers could be used by Finland. The volunteers were in the front lines in northern Salla area starting on February 28, 1940...

     fighting for the Finnish
    Finland
    Finland , officially the Republic of Finland, is a Nordic country situated in the Fennoscandian region of Northern Europe. It is bordered by Sweden in the west, Norway in the north and Russia in the east, while Estonia lies to its south across the Gulf of Finland.Around 5.4 million people reside...

     side in the Winter War
    Winter War
    The Winter War was a military conflict between the Soviet Union and Finland. It began with a Soviet offensive on 30 November 1939 – three months after the start of World War II and the Soviet invasion of Poland – and ended on 13 March 1940 with the Moscow Peace Treaty...


See also

  • Foreign legion
    Foreign legion
    Foreign legion or Foreign Legion is a title which has been used by a small number of military units composed of foreign volunteers.It usually refers to the French Foreign Legion, part of the French Army established in 1831.It can also refer to:...

  • Spanish Civil War and Foreign Involvement
  • Mercenary
    Mercenary
    A mercenary, is a person who takes part in an armed conflict based on the promise of material compensation rather than having a direct interest in, or a legal obligation to, the conflict itself. A non-conscript professional member of a regular army is not considered to be a mercenary although he...

  • Europäische Freiwillige
    Europäische Freiwillige
    Europäische Freiwillige is a German term meaning 'European Volunteers', derived from the German 'Freiwillige' , and is used to describe volunteers from an occupied country who join the army of the occupier.-Background:...

     of the Second World War
  • Military volunteer
    Military volunteer
    A military volunteer is a person who enlists in military service by free will, and is not a mercenary or a foreign legionaire. Volunteers often enlist to fight in the armed forces of a foreign country. Military volunteers are essential for the operation of volunteer militaries.Many armies,...

  • White Tights
    White Tights
    "White Tights" is a Russian urban myth surrounding the alleged participation of female sniper mercenaries in combat against Russian forces in various armed conflicts from late 1980s.The myth describes these women as blond Amazon-like nationalistic biathletes turned anti-Russian mercenaries...

    , alleged Baltic female snipers in Chechnya
  • Foreign support in the Winter War
    Foreign support in the Winter War
    The foreign support in the Winter War contained materiel, men and moral support to the Finnish struggle against the Soviet Union in the Winter War. World opinion at large supported the Finnish cause...